Tuesday, October 6, 2009

30 years after gay march, activists head to DC

30 years after gay march, activists head to DC - Yahoo! News
SAN FRANCISCO – A Democrat in the White House. Demands for sweeping civil rights protections. Religious opponents working to undo a string of state-based victories.

That was the backdrop in 1979 when gay rights activists staged their first national march in Washington. Thirty years later, with the landscape looking much the same, thousands of advocates are preparing to rally again in the nation's capital this weekend.

And they are demanding many of the same things: a bill to outlaw job discrimination based on gender, a law that would treat attacks on gays as federal hate crimes, and a presidential order allowing gays to serve openly in the military.

"Thirty years ago was our introduction to the nation. It was 'These are the things we stand for and are about,'" said David Mixner, a former adviser to President Bill Clinton. "This march, more than any other, is a declaration that we are a full-fledged civil rights movement, we are here to win our freedom now and we won't wait any longer."

Organizers of Sunday's National Equality March say that with President Barack Obama encouraging gay activists to keep pressure on him and Congress, it's time to make another show of visibility as they did at marches in 1987, 1993 and 2000.....

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